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Hunter Lee
Hunter Lee

Veda Dual Audio Eng Hindi [Extra Quality]

Is Vedanta the Future Religion?By Swami Vivekananda[Delivered in San Francisco on April 8, 1900]E-Text Source: www.ramakrishnavivekananda.infoThose of you who have been attending my lectures for the last month or so must,by this time, be familiar with the ideas contained in the Vedanta philosophy.Vedanta is the most ancient religion of the world; but it can never be said tohave become popular. Therefore the question "Is it going to be the religion ofthe future?" is very difficult to answer.At the start, I may tell you that I do not know whether it will ever be thereligion of the vast majority of men. Will it ever be able to take hold of onewhole nation such as the United States of America? Possibly it may. However,that is the question we want to discuss this afternoon.I shall begin by telling you what Vedanta is not, and then I shall tell you whatit is. But you must remember that, with all its emphasis on impersonalprinciples, Vedanta is not antagonistic to anything, though it does notcompromise or give up the truths which it considers fundamental.You all know that certain things are necessary to make a religion. First of all,there is the book. The power of the book is simply marvellous! Whatever it be,the book is the centre round which human allegiance gathers. Not one religion isliving today but has a book. With all its rationalism and tall talk, humanitystill clings to the books. In your country every attempt to start a religionwithout a book has failed. In India sects rise with great success, but within afew years they die down, because there is no book behind them. So in every othercountry.Study the rise and fall of the Unitarian movement. It represents the bestthought of your nation. Why should it not have spread like the Methodist,Baptist, and other Christian denominations? Because there was no book. On theother hand, think of the Jews. A handful of men, driven from one country toanother, still hold together, because they have a book. Think of the Parsees -only a hundred thousand in the world. About a million are all that remain of theJains in India. And do you know that these handfuls of Parsees and Jains stillkeep on just because of their books? The religions that are living at thepresent day - every one of them has a book.The second requisite, to make a religion, is veneration for some person. He isworshipped either as the Lord of the world or as the great Teacher. Men mustworship some embodied man! They must have the Incarnation or the prophet or thegreat leader. You find it in every religion today. Hindus and Christians - theyhave Incarnations: Buddhists, Mohammedans, and Jews have prophets. But it is allabout the same - all their veneration twines round some person or persons.The third requisite seems to be that a religion, to be strong and sure ofitself, must believe that it alone is the truth; otherwise it cannot influencepeople.Liberalism dies because it is dry, because it cannot rouse fanaticism in thehuman mind, because it cannot bring out hatred for everything except itself.That is why liberalism is bound to go down again and again. It can influenceonly small numbers of people. The reason is not hard to see. Liberalism tries tomake us unselfish. But we do not want to be unselfish - we see no immediate gainin unselfishness; we gain more by being selfish. We accept liberalism as long aswe are poor, have nothing. The moment we acquire money and power, we turn veryconservative. The poor man is a democrat. When he becomes rich, he becomes anaristocrat. In religion, too, human nature acts in the same way.A prophet arises, promises all kinds of rewards to those who will follow him andeternal doom to those who will not. Thus he makes his ideas spread. All existentreligions that are spreading are tremendously fanatic. The more a sect hatesother sects, the greater is its success and the more people it draws into itsfold. My conclusion, after travelling over a good part of the world and livingwith many races, and in view of the conditions prevailing in the world, is thatthe present state of things is going to continue, in spite of much talk ofuniversal brotherhood.Vedanta does not believe in any of these teachings. First, it does not believein a book - that is the difficulty to start with. It denies the authority of anybook over any other book. It denies emphatically that any one book can containall the truths about God, soul, the ultimate reality. Those of you who have readthe Upanishads remember that they say again and again, "Not by the reading ofbooks can we realise the Self."Second, it finds veneration for some particular person still more difficult touphold. Those of you who are students of Vedanta - by Vedanta is always meantthe Upanishads - know that this is the only religion that does not cling to anyperson. Not one man or woman has ever become the object of worship among theVedantins. It cannot be. A man is no more worthy of worship than any bird, anyworm. We are all brothers. The difference is only in degree. I am exactly thesame as the lowest worm. You see how very little room there is in Vedanta forany man to stand ahead of us and for us to go and worship him - he dragging uson and we being saved by him. Vedanta does not give you that. No book, no man toworship, nothing.A still greater difficulty is about God. You want to be democratic in thiscountry. It is the democratic God that Vedanta teaches.You have a government, but the government is impersonal. Yours is not anautocratic government, and yet it is more powerful than any monarchy in theworld. Nobody seems to understand that the real power, the real life, the realstrength is in the unseen, the impersonal, the nobody. As a mere personseparated from others, you are nothing, but as an impersonal unit of the nationthat rules itself, you are tremendous. You are all one in the government - youare a tremendous power. But where exactly is the power? Each man is the power.There is no king. I see everybody equally the same. I have not to take off myhat and bow low to anyone. Yet there is a tremendous power in each man.Vedanta is just that. Its God is not the monarch sitting on a throne, entirelyapart. There are those who like their God that way - a God to be feared andpropitiated. They burn candles and crawl in the dust before Him. They want aking to rule them - they believe in a king in heaven to rule them all. The kingis gone from this country at least. Where is the king of heaven now? Just wherethe earthly king is. In this country the king has entered every one of you. Youare all kings in this country. So with the religion of Vedanta. You are allGods. One God is not sufficient. You are all Gods, says the Vedanta.This makes Vedanta very difficult. It does not teach the old idea of God at all.In place of that God who sat above the clouds and managed the affairs of theworld without asking our permission, who created us out of nothing just becauseHe liked it and made us undergo all this misery just because He liked it,Vedanta teaches the God that is in everyone, has become everyone and everything.His majesty the king has gone from this country; the Kingdom of Heaven went fromVedanta hundreds of years ago.India cannot give up his majesty the king of the earth - that is why Vedantacannot become the religion of India. There is a chance of Vedanta becoming thereligion of your country because of democracy. But it can become so only if youcan and do clearly understand it, if you become real men and women, not peoplewith vague ideas and superstitions in your brains, and if you want to be trulyspiritual, since Vedanta is concerned only with spirituality.What is the idea of God in heaven? Materialism. The Vedantic idea is theinfinite principle of God embodied in every one of us. God sitting up on acloud! Think of the utter blasphemy of it! It is materialism - downrightmaterialism. When babies think this way, it may be all right, but when grown-upmen try to teach such things, it is downright disgusting - that is what it is.It is all matter, all body idea, the gross idea, the sense idea. Every bit of itis clay and nothing but clay. Is that religion? It is no more religion than isthe Mumbo Jumbo "religion" of Africa. God is spirit and He should be worshippedin spirit and in truth. Does spirit live only in heaven? What is spirit? We areall spirit. Why is it we do not realise it? What makes you different from me?Body and nothing else. Forget the body, and all is spirit.These are what Vedanta has not to give. No book. No man to be singled out fromthe rest of mankind - "You are worms, and we are the Lord God!" - none of that.If you are the Lord God, I also am the Lord God. So Vedanta knows no sin. Thereare mistakes but no sin; and in the long run everything is going to be allright. No Satan - none of this nonsense. Vedanta believes in only one sin, onlyone in the world, and it is this: the moment you think you are a sinner oranybody is a sinner, that is sin. From that follows every other mistake or whatis usually called sin. There have been many mistakes in our lives. But we aregoing on. Glory be unto us that we have made mistakes! Take a long look at yourpast life. If your present condition is good, it has been caused by all the pastmistakes as well as successes. Glory be unto success! Glory be unto mistakes! Donot look back upon what has been done. Go ahead!You see, Vedanta proposes no sin nor sinner. No God to be afraid of. He is theone being of whom we shall never be afraid, because He is our own Self. There isonly one being of whom you cannot possibly be afraid; He is that. Then is not hereally the most superstitious person who has fear of God? There may be someonewho is afraid of his shadow; but even he is not afraid of himself. God is man'svery Self. He is that one being whom you can never possibly fear. What is allthis nonsense, the fear of the Lord entering into a man, making him tremble andso on? Lord bless us that we are not all in the lunatic asylum! But if most ofus are not lunatics, why should we invent such ideas as fear of God? Lord Buddhasaid that the whole human race is lunatic, more or less. It is perfectly true,it seems.No book, no person, no Personal God. All these must go. Again, the senses mustgo. We cannot be bound to the senses. At present we are tied down - like personsdying of cold in the glaciers. They feel such a strong desire to sleep, and whentheir friends try to wake them, warning them of death, they say, "Let me die, Iwant to sleep." We all cling to the little things of the senses, even if we areruined thereby: we forget there are much greater things.There is a Hindu legend that the Lord was once incarnated on earth as a pig. Hehad a pig mate and in course of time several little pigs were born to Him. Hewas very happy with His family, living in the mire, squealing with joy,forgetting His divine glory and lordship. The gods became exceedingly concernedand came to the earth to beg Him to give up the pig body and return to heaven.But the Lord would have none of that; He drove them away. He said He was veryhappy and did not want to be disturbed. Seeing no other course, the godsdestroyed the pig body of the Lord. At once He regained His divine majesty andwas astonished that He could have found any joy in being a pig.People behave in the same way. Whenever they hear of the Impersonal God, theysay, "What will become of my individuality? - my individuality will go!" Nexttime that thought comes, remember the pig, and then think what an infinite mineof happiness you have, each one of you. How pleased you are with your presentcondition! But when you realise what you truly are, you will be astonished thatyou were unwilling to give up your sense-life. What is there in yourpersonality? It is any better than that pig life? And this you do not want togive up! Lord bless us all!What does Vedanta teach us? In the first place, it teaches that you need noteven go out of yourself to know the truth. All the past and all the future arehere in the present. No man ever saw the past. Did any one of you see the past?When you think you are knowing the past, you only imagine the past in thepresent moment. To see the future, you would have to bring it down to thepresent, which is the only reality - the rest is imagination. This present isall that is. There is only the One. All is here right now. One moment ininfinite time is quite as complete and all-inclusive as every other moment. Allthat is and was and will be is here in the present. Let anybody try to imagineanything outside of it - he will not succeed.What religion can paint a heaven which is not like this earth? And it is allart, only this art is being made known to us gradually. We, with five senses,look upon this world and find it gross, having colour, form, sound, and thelike. Suppose I develop an electric sense - all will change. Suppose my sensesgrow finer - you will all appear changed. If I change, you change. If I gobeyond the power of the senses, you will appear as spirit and God. Things arenot what they seem.We shall understand this by and by, and then see it: all the heavens -everything - are here, now, and they really are nothing but appearances on theDivine Presence. This Presence is much greater than all the earths and heavens.People think that this world is bad and imagine that heaven is somewhere else.This world is not bad. It is God Himself if you know it. It is a hard thing evento understand, harder than to believe. The murderer who is going to be hangedtomorrow is all God, perfect God. It is very hard to understand, surely; but itcan be understood.Therefore Vedanta formulates, not universal brotherhood, but universal oneness.I am the same as any other man, as any animal - good, bad, anything. It is onebody, one mind, one soul throughout. Spirit never dies. There is no deathanywhere, not even for the body. Not even the mind dies. How can even the bodydie? One leaf may fall - does the tree die? The universe is my body. See how itcontinues. All minds are mine. With all feet I walk. Through all mouths I speak.In everybody I reside.Why can I not feel it? Because of that individuality, that piggishness. You havebecome bound up with this mind and can only be here, not there. What isimmortality? How few reply, "It is this very existence of ours!" Most peoplethink this is all mortal and dead - that God is not here, that they will becomeimmortal by going to heaven. They imagine that they will see God after death.But if they do not see Him here and now, they will not see Him after death.Though they all believe in immortality, they do not know that immortality is notgained by dying and going to heaven, but by giving up this piggishindividuality, by not tying ourselves down to one little body. Immortality isknowing ourselves as one with all, living in all bodies, perceiving through allminds. We are bound to feel in other bodies than this one. We are bound to feelin other bodies. What is sympathy? Is there any limit to this sympathy, thisfeeling in our bodies? It is quite possible that the time will come when I shallfeel through the whole universe.What is the gain? The pig body is hard to give up; we are sorry to lose theenjoyment of our one little pig body! Vedanta does not say, "Give it up": itsays, "Transcend it". No need of asceticism - better would be the enjoyment oftwo bodies, better three, living in more bodies than one! When I can enjoythrough the whole universe, the whole universe is my body.There are many who feel horrified when they hear these teachings. They do notlike to be told that they are not just little pig bodies, created by a tyrantGod. I tell them, "Come up!" They say they are born in sin - they cannot come upexcept through someone's grace. I say, "You are Divine! They answer, "Youblasphemer, how dare you speak so? How can a miserable creature be God? We aresinners!" I get very much discouraged at times, you know. Hundreds of men andwomen tell me, "If there is no hell, how can there be any religion?" If thesepeople go to hell of their own will, who can prevent them?Whatever you dream and think of, you create. If it is hell, you die and seehell. If it is evil and Satan, you get a Satan. If ghosts, you get ghosts.Whatever you think, that you become. If you have to think, think good thoughts,great thoughts. This taking for granted that you are weak little worms! Bydeclaring we are weak, we become weak, we do not become better. Suppose we putout the light, close the windows, and call the room dark. Think of the nonsense!What good does it do me to say I am a sinner? If I am in the dark, let me lighta lamp. The whole thing is gone. Yet how curious is the nature of men! Thoughalways conscious that the universal mind is behind their life, they think moreof Satan, of darkness and lies. You tell them the truth - they do not see it;they like darkness better.This forms the one great question asked by Vedanta: Why are people so afraid?The answer is that they have made themselves helpless and dependent on others.We are so lazy, we do not want to do anything for ourselves. We want a PersonalGod, a saviour or a prophet to do everything for us. The very rich man neverwalks, always goes in the carriage; but in the course of years, he wakes up oneday paralysed all over. Then he begins to feel that the way he had lived was notgood after all. No man can walk for me. Every time one did, it was to my injury.If everything is done for a man by another, he will lose the use of his ownlimbs. Anything we do ourselves, that is the only thing we do. Anything that isdone for us by another never can be ours. You cannot learn spiritual truths frommy lectures. If you have learnt anything, I was only the spark that brought itout, made it flash. That is all the prophets and teachers can do. All thisrunning after help is foolishness.You know, there are bullock carts in India. Usually two bulls are harnessed to acart, and sometimes a sheaf of straw is dangled at the tip of the pole, a littlein front of the animals but beyond their reach. The bulls try continually tofeed upon the straw, but never succeed. This is exactly how we are helped! Wethink we are going to get security, strength, wisdom, happiness from theoutside. We always hope but never realise our hope. Never does any help comefrom the outside.There is no help for man. None ever was, none is, and none will be. Why shouldthere be? Are you not men and women? Are the lords of the earth to be helped byothers? Are you not ashamed? You will be helped when you are reduced to dust.But you are spirit. Pull yourself out of difficulties by yourself! Save yourselfby yourself! There is none to help you - never was. To think that there is, issweet delusion. It comes to no good.There came a Christian to me once and said, "You are a terrible sinner." Ianswered, "Yes, I am. Go on." He was a Christian missionary. That man would notgive me any rest. When I see him, I fly. He said, "I have very good things foryou. You are a sinner and you are going to hell." I replied, "Very good, whatelse?" I asked him, "Where are you going?" "I am going to heaven", he answered.I said, "I will go to hell." That day he gave me up.Here comes a Christian man and he says, "You are all doomed; but if you believein this doctrine, Christ will help you out." If this were true - but of courseit is nothing but superstition - there would be no wickedness in the Christiancountries. Let us believe in it - believing costs nothing - but why is there noresult? If I ask, "Why is it that there are so many wicked people?" they say,"We have to work more." Trust in God, but keep your powder dry! Pray to God,


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